Opposing View – 3 things to stop Tottenham sent to us from a Flying Eagle. More like a grounded finch after the match hopefully!
Despite going four games without a win, I am hopeful that our good recent record at Selhurst Park means we can triumph against Spurs.
With our only defeat at home since September coming against Arsenal last month, we can certainly give Pochettino`s men some trouble on Sunday.
Our opponents drew with League One strugglers Rochdale last time out, but we will be coming up against a team who prior to that game were in a rich vein of form, following draws away at Juventus and Liverpool in recent matches. So, can we stop Tottenham like we did with Manchester City and Chelsea? Here is how I believe we can do it:
1) Shackle Dembele
He may not be the most celebrated of Tottenham`s players, but it can be the argued that the Belgian midfielder is equally important as Eriksen, Kane and Alli to how they play.
The 30-year-old has the unique ability of turning on the ball, holding off challenges and making runs at an opponent`s backline. He frees up space for other players by running with the ball from deep, committing defenders and creating holes.
He must be stopped before he can turn on the ball. The likes of Milivojevic and McArthur must be on his case for the full ninety minutes, nibbling at his heels, and if they have to, commit fouls in order to prevent him from making his runs.
2) Deprive Eriksen and Alli of any space
Both Eriksen and Alli thrive when they allowed time to think on the ball. The Dane is very adept at moving into spaces to offer himself as an outlet for a pass. Roy will no doubt be working on a strategy to cut off the playmaker`s supply lines.
Spurs`s other main creative threat meanwhile may have not had as good a season this time around, but the England international has still had 13 assists in all competitions, already the same amount as he contributed last campaign.
If both players can be silenced, we can isolate Harry Kane, leaving the Premier League`s most lethal striker with little ammunition to hurt us with.
3) Counter attack against possession hungry opponents
Spurs love to have possession on the ball, but we can employ similar tactics to those that worked against Manchester City. If we can nullify their attacking threat and hit them with pace on the counter, we could be in business.
It`s disappointing that we still won`t have Wilfried Zaha back for his game. The Ivorian continues to have knee troubles, but he would have been ideal for playing on the counter attack in this match.
Without our No.11, it is going to be a bigger challenge, but hopefully our other speed merchant, Andros Townsend, can come up with the goods. It`s a tough task but there is a case to be made that we can come out with a result from this match.